The announcement that Ludwig Museum Budapest director Barnabas Bencsik’s contract was allowed to run out today rather than, as was expected, temporarily extended – leaving the institution without professional leadership while a belated competition for this key post is organised, does not bode well for the future of the Ludwig Museum of Contemporary Art and the many excellent people who work there. On the past record of the government in previous competitions for directorships of cultural institutions, the successful candidate is likely to be politically and aesthetically aligned with the nationalist ideology of the regime and its creature, the constitutionally-embedded Hungarian Academy of Arts (MMA): curators with a progressive, internationalist outlook, or even moderate-conservative fellow travellers, need not apply.
The five-year long managerial mandate of Barnabás Bencsik, the director of the Ludwig Museum – Museum of Contemporary Art, Budapest, came to an end on 28th February, 2013.
According to the instruction sent by the Ministry of Human Resources on the aforesaid day, the competition procedure related to the occupation of the managing director’s position is in progess.
The temporary conduct of the museum’s affairs, in the cause of the museum’s uniterrupted operation, happens according to the procedure defined by the Ludwig Museum’s Rules of Operation and Organization. (press release, Ludwig Museum Budapest, 1 March 2013)